Demonstrations against President-elect Donald Trump and his campaign promises continued for a fourth day on Saturday.
Thousands of people gathered in Union Square Park around 11 a.m. and then marched uptown to Trump Tower along Fifth Avenue. Many were carrying homemade signs and wearing Hillary Clinton T-shirts, buttons and stickers.
David Bruce, of Manhattan, said demonstrating was less about challenging Trump than showing support to women, the LGBT community and people of color.
“It’s about love, it’s not about trashing Donald Trump,” Bruce, a 35-year-old film critic, said. “Donald Trump is preaching pure evil, he is preaching hate.”
Organizers of the demonstration called it a peaceful protest. “Divided is the reason we just fell. We must unite despite our differences to stop HATE from ruling the land,” the Facebook event said.
The demonstrators were joined by liberal filmmaker Michael Moore, who said he was at Trump Tower earlier to demand Trump step aside.
“We’re gonna see this every single day, guys,” he said of anti-Trump protests.
Two people were arrested Saturday for obstructing governmental administration, cops said.
The gathering Saturday followed three days of demonstrations in Manhattan.
Hundreds gathered in Washington Square Park on Friday in what was called a Love Rally. Many demonstrators then marched to Trump Tower, carrying signs and chanting “Not my president,” among other anti-Trump slogans.
Eleven people were arrested Friday on disorderly conduct charges, the NYPD said. One woman was arrested for assault Thursday night outside Trump Tower, and 65 people were arrested during the protests Wednesday night, police said. The majority of arrests Wednesday were for disorderly conduct and some were for resisting arrest, cops said.
‘HE RAN ON BIGOTRY’
Demonstrators had gathered in the rain Wednesday in Union Square Park before marching to Trump Tower. Many cited the Republican’s views on immigration, LGBT rights and reproductive rights as reasons to protest.
According to the Facebook event created by organization Socialist Alternative NYC, the protest was organized to “build a movement to fight racism, sexism, and Islamaphobia.”
As demonstrators marched north, they chanted, “Donald Trump, go away, racist, sexist, anti-gay,” and “My body, my choice.” At Fifth Avenue and 56th Street, near Trump Tower, they stopped to chant “Not my president.” The group stretched for blocks, and many in the crowd raised their middle finger to Trump’s skyscraper.
For some, merely identifying yourself was a form of protest against Trump.
“I’m a black woman. That’s all I need to say,” said Ashlee Danielle, 25, of the Bronx.
“I’m Jewish and my grandparents immigrated here to escape the Holocaust,” said Ella Rivers, 21, of Crown Heights.
Rivers said she feared Trump’s election and compared it to Tony Abbott’s election as prime minister in Australia — a reaction, she said, to the country’s first female prime minister, Julia Gillard.
“He ran on bigotry. This has been a campaign of spite. It’s spite against our progress as a country,” she said.
She said she couldn’t comprehend how Trump could explicitly boast about groping women and still be elected president.
“Right now, we need to be here and take care of each other,” she said as she teared up.
A few protesters were offering hugs to the despondent.
“It’s heartbreak,” said Don Bernal, 26, of Bedford-Stuyvesant, who held up a “free hug” sign. “I just saw everyone out today. They were heartbroken. I figured people need this.”
Danielle said she didn’t believe that Trump successfully campaigned on issues like bringing back manufacturing jobs, but rather by feeding on racism and animosity toward women.
“This is whitelash,” she said. “This is hell on Earth. I feel disgusted, betrayed. I don’t think anything positive will come out of this.”
Some protesters blamed what one chanter called the “weakness” of the Democratic Party and its failure to win votes in key states. There were forecasts that a coalition of anti-Trump conservatives and populist leftists would rally against the president-elect.
Rob Jenkins, 28, a member of Socialist Alternatives, said it’s time that a party forms to represent the working class.
“Trump has nothing to do with the working class. He’s a member of the elite, and that will become clear to his supporters,” Jenkins said. “He’s not going to live up to his promises to the working class. He’s not bringing any jobs back.”
But mostly, many focused on what they perceived as Trump’s attacks on minorities and women.
“We have a black president who is about to hand the baton to a candidate endorsed by the KKK,” Danielle continued.
She partially blamed the media for what she described as normalizing Trump and his beliefs. She said that Trump’s election shows just how little social progress the country has made.
“We haven’t made any progress,” she said. “We have a racist, sexist, bigoted man in the White House.”